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Wet & Wavy Wednesday

On Wednesday, we’ll catch the tail end of the strong storm system impacting the Pacific Northwest. The dying cold front will bring some light rain to the region, but that’s about it. Rain will be most likely the farther north and closer to the coast you live. Temperatures will take a hit as well, dropping some 10-15ºF from Tuesday’s highs. The other factor will be the waves. Big northwest swells will arrive overnight and pound the coast on Wednesday with breakers of 18-22ft. We’ll remain unsettled into Thursday as a couple of trailing waves bring additional light rain chances.


From the National Weather Service in Monterey for the north and west-facing immediate coastline of Santa Cruz & Monterey Counties in effect from 7PM this evening 4AM Thursday.

* Large breaking waves of 18 to 22 feet.

*Dangerous swimming and surfing conditions and localized beach erosion. Large waves can sweep across the beach without warning, pulling people into the sea from rocks, jetties, and beaches. These waves can also move large objects such as logs, crushing anyone caught underneath.

*Large northwest waves will peak Wednesday morning. Northwest facing beaches are most at risk for large turbulent shore break and strong currents.

This includes a BEACH HAZARDS STATEMENT for the north side of Monterey Bay for an increased risk of sneaker waves.

Large breaking waves along the coast will lead to increased run- up on beaches with waves topping and washing over large rocks and jetties. These large waves can be erratic and unpredictable. Use extra caution near the surf zone as these large waves will be capable of sweeping people into the water. Avoid rocks and jetties. Avoid steep beaches. Stay much farther back from the water and never turn your back on the ocean.

From The National Weather Service in Monterey for the north coast of Santa Cruz County in effect until 10AM Wednesday.

*Visibility one quarter mile or less in dense fog.

*Hazardous driving conditions due to low visibility.

If driving, slow down, use your headlights, and leave plenty of distance ahead of you.

Overnight: Thin high clouds initially, then some low cloudcover approaching the coast by dawn. Patchy fog possible in clear, sheltered areas. Lows in the 40s to low 50s on the coast and mid 30s to 40s inland.

Wednesday: Increasing clouds with rain likely around the bay after noon. A few light showers may reach the coastal mountains prior. A few showers may linger into the evening. Not much will reach our southern valleys. Cooler, with highs in the 60s. Breezy southerly winds becoming more northwesterly late.

Thursday: Partly cloudy with an isolated shower possible in the morning. Cool with gusty northwest winds at times. We’ll see another chance of light rain in the evening.

Extended: Skies will begin to clear out on Friday with a cool air mass settling in. Mornings will be cold into the weekend, but afternoons will warm back up above normal by Saturday and especially on Sunday. Saturday morning is expected to be the coldest with frost for inland valleys and patchy frost possible toward the coast.

This week's normal temperatures:

LOW: 43ºF
HIGH: 60ºF

LOW: 37ºF
HIGH: 62ºF

-The outlook from the Climate Prediction Center for December 13th – 19th calls for the likelihood of near normal temperatures and ABOVE normal precipitation.

- ENSO (El Niño/La Niña) STATUS: 
El Niño Advisory
- ENSO Forecast: Strong to Very Strong El Niño expected this winter.
-Area drought status: Currently drought-free

Article Topic Follows: Weather Authority

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Dann Cianca

Dann Cianca is the chief meteorologist at KION News Channel 5/46.


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